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  #1  
Old 05-24-09, 06:20 AM
copperpenny copperpenny is offline
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1st break from Adderall in 10 months -- Withdrawal: worst is over??

So I started taking adderall 10 months ago...started at just 2.5 mg per day. Now I am at 20mg per day.

I haven't taken a break since I started. I've been so busy. But I have a break in between school right now...Summer school starts in 2 weeks. And I have a bunch of friends in town during this time, coincidentally, so I figured I shoudl stop adderall, try to refresh my tolerance for summer school, and try to distract myself

Anyway, yesterday I took WAY less than usual. Just 7.5 mg (vs. 20 mg per day for the past few weeks). I felt iffy. The worst part was that my eyes were so bloodshot. However, today, I took...ZERO mg of adderall. And I felt totally fine! I thought i would feel withdrawal for a couple/few days, sO i was really happy to feel totally find today.

I was really worried that I would be in withdrawal while my friedns were visiting me, and not be able to show them a good time/be outgoing/energetic/fun. But I feel liek the worst should be over. Right?

So, my friends are here for another 8 days, and I feel like i won't need to take adderall at all during that time (in order to stay alert/awake/have energy to do things)...which means I'll be able to take a full 10-11 day break from adderall. I'm excited! to be honest, I thought taking a break would be much harder than this!

Im hoping this really puts a big dent in my tolerance. Or am I being overly optimistic? I know 10-11 days won't bring my tolerance back down to the initial 2.5 mg, but it should be a significant difference, right?
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Old 05-24-09, 03:43 PM
copperpenny copperpenny is offline
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Re: 1st break from Adderall in 10 months -- Withdrawal: worst is over??

ok im starting day 2 of zero mg's.

its been about 40 hours since my last adderall. and about 60 hours since my last "normal" dose.

so far I feel fine.

PRAY FOR me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
lol
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Old 05-24-09, 03:56 PM
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Re: 1st break from Adderall in 10 months -- Withdrawal: worst is over??

You should be fine. A lot of people take drug holidays and do quite well.

Plus, since your dose was relatively low (20mg/daily), I really wouldn't expect any severe withdraw symptoms. It's not like you were on 100+mg/day (and/or taking the drug without a doctor's care) for many years and then just quit cold turkey. You should be just fine!
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Old 05-24-09, 06:02 PM
kiosk kiosk is offline
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Re: 1st break from Adderall in 10 months -- Withdrawal: worst is over??

shouldnt quit cold turkey anyways......sometimes it takes a while for the brain to realize its missing is dopamine and this might reflect in different ways depending on the person
the question to ask is how is your ADD now which you dont mention anything about....which is really what is meant to treat
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Old 05-24-09, 07:07 PM
copperpenny copperpenny is offline
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Re: 1st break from Adderall in 10 months -- Withdrawal: worst is over??

now that I am taking a holiday from adderall, my adhd symptoms are definitely "back in action." I have trouble reading and stuff.

but the thing is, since I am on "vacation" and hosting friends, the adhd symptoms are actually "ideal" right now since my goals and obligations for this week are to be spontaneous, fun, entertaining, and a good host.

i was worried that I would be in withdrawal off adderall -- have flat affect, blood shot eyes, trouble getting out of bed and stuff, and my visitors would have a bad trip. Since I just finished finals, and my summer school does start for another 2 weeks, I do not need adderall right now because I don't have any work or homework to do. So it was a perfect time to take a break from adderall , and hopefully the holiday will help my tolerance, which has been steadily increasing. My concern was that I would be a total wreck and ruin the vacation, since I have taken adderall virtually everyday for the past 10 months.

i know my dose is pretty low, but I started off at 2.5 mg per day, so 20 mg per day is a significant increase. furthermore, at the end of the day, I often feel "crashed", so I was worried that my holiday would feel like a 10 day "crash" and my vacation would be ruined. But after surviving that first day (of blood shot eyes and somewhat flat affect) i feel like I am in a good mood and able to enjoy the vacation and put on a good "show" for my visitors. this is a relief.

Anyway, after the ~9 day holiday, do you think my tolerance will be affected at all? Or even after like 10 days, will I still required 20mg per day to get the same desired effect I was getting before my holiday?
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Old 05-25-09, 02:37 AM
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Re: 1st break from Adderall in 10 months -- Withdrawal: worst is over??

Withdrawal only happens to people who are addicted. You weren't addicted, you were just on a moderate dose of your prescribed meds. Some people experience some rebound effects at first, like being very tired or hungry, but that's not withdrawal. And not everyone gets a rebound either.

After a 10-day break, I would imagine your tolerance would have decreased a little. I wouldn't jump right back into 20 mg a day, but maybe start off with 10 mg when you go back to it.
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Old 05-25-09, 03:22 AM
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Re: 1st break from Adderall in 10 months -- Withdrawal: worst is over??

Y'know I'm old-school, so I'm not a big fan of LOL-speak, but nothing else will do:

LMFAO

BTW I too have taken a "medication holiday" this weekend. I have been taking 60 mg of Adderall IR daily since November. Pray that I don't end up in the ER! (Giggle, snort.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by copperpenny View Post
I was worried that I would be in withdrawal off adderall -- have flat affect, blood shot eyes, trouble getting out of bed and stuff, and my visitors would have a bad trip. Since I just finished finals, and my summer school does start for another 2 weeks, I do not need adderall right now because I don't have any work or homework to do. So it was a perfect time to take a break from adderall , and hopefully the holiday will help my tolerance, which has been steadily increasing. My concern was that I would be a total wreck and ruin the vacation, since I have taken adderall virtually everyday for the past 10 months.

i know my dose is pretty low, but I started off at 2.5 mg per day, so 20 mg per day is a significant increase. furthermore, at the end of the day, I often feel "crashed", so I was worried that my holiday would feel like a 10 day "crash" and my vacation would be ruined. But after surviving that first day (of blood shot eyes and somewhat flat affect) i feel like I am in a good mood and able to enjoy the vacation and put on a good "show" for my visitors. this is a relief.
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Old 05-26-09, 10:39 PM
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Re: 1st break from Adderall in 10 months -- Withdrawal: worst is over??

Quote:
Originally Posted by Retromancer View Post
Y'know I'm old-school, so I'm not a big fan of LOL-speak, but nothing else will do:

LMFAO


BTW I too have taken a "medication holiday" this weekend. I have been taking 60 mg of Adderall IR daily since November. Pray that I don't end up in the ER! (Giggle, snort.)


i dont get it.

you're laughing because my dose is so low?

well, i realize it is low, but i think taking adderall every single day for 10 months straight, and then stopping basically cold turkey for 11 days straight is legit reason for concern. as it turned out, it wasn't difficult at all, except the first day off.

and i wasn't expecting to necessarily be in withdrawal per se, but rather just be a little sluggish and have blood shot eyes, and not enjoy this time with friends i havent seen in 6 months.
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Old 05-26-09, 10:56 PM
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Re: 1st break from Adderall in 10 months -- Withdrawal: worst is over??

I can understand why you'd be concerned, especially with all the bad publicity that Adderall gets for its addictive profile. But that's exaggerated, for the most part, to scare people out of abusing the stuff. Not that it can't be addictive, but that's not usually a danger for people taking it responsibly.

(Don't mind Retro, he only knows how to answer posts with callous sarcasm. )
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Old 05-26-09, 11:06 PM
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Re: 1st break from Adderall in 10 months -- Withdrawal: worst is over??

In part I find it funny because I have now been laid off twice since I was diagnosed. Each time I had to stop taking some type of amphetamine medication -- after having been on such medications for years. (4 years the first time and 2 years the second). Each time I tapered down my dosage until I ran out. Life went on. For me the reality of unemployment is far more traumatic than going off my meds.

Don't get me wrong, it is good that you are treating your medication use with the appropriate gravitas. Yes at sufficiently high doses for long periods of time these drugs can be emphatically addicting. I simply believe you have not gotten close to that threshhold.

I wish you success on your journey.

Quote:
Originally Posted by copperpenny View Post
i dont get it.

you're laughing because my dose is so low?

well, i realize it is low, but i think taking adderall every single day for 10 months straight, and then stopping basically cold turkey for 11 days straight is legit reason for concern. as it turned out, it wasn't difficult at all, except the first day off.

and i wasn't expecting to necessarily be in withdrawal per se, but rather just be a little sluggish and have blood shot eyes, and not enjoy this time with friends i havent seen in 6 months.
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Old 05-26-09, 11:32 PM
ozchris ozchris is offline
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Re: 1st break from Adderall in 10 months -- Withdrawal: worst is over??

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruby85 View Post
Withdrawal only happens to people who are addicted. You weren't addicted, you were just on a moderate dose of your prescribed meds. Some people experience some rebound effects at first, like being very tired or hungry, but that's not withdrawal. And not everyone gets a rebound either.

After a 10-day break, I would imagine your tolerance would have decreased a little. I wouldn't jump right back into 20 mg a day, but maybe start off with 10 mg when you go back to it.

Hrm it all comes down to what your personal definition of withdrawal is. In most of the world 'withdrawal' can be used to describe effects that have nothing to do with addiction.

copperpenny: You're right.

Quote:
and i wasn't expecting to necessarily be in withdrawal per se, but rather just be a little sluggish
That's a totally accurate expectation. Some people make it seem worse than it is...but if you've been- (a) taking stimulants regularly
then (b) - stopping them abruptly can cause some discontinuation effects like sluggishness, less motivation, sleepiness, apathy.

These things happen at therapeutic doses to people with ADD...it's not rebound. Your brain is used to having a medication and then it has to adjust to not having it. This can take around a week or so. The effects are mild in my experience...similar to stopping caffeine if you've been having it regularly, but without the headaches and irritability.

Some people won't experience this at all but abrupt discontinuation from stimulants can definitely cause some effects. My psychiatrist has been treating people with stimulants for over 30 years so I trust what he says on this matter.
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Old 05-27-09, 01:02 AM
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Re: 1st break from Adderall in 10 months -- Withdrawal: worst is over??

Quote:
it's not rebound. Your brain is used to having a medication and then it has to adjust to not having it.
That's what rebound means. While the term withdrawal might mean different things to different people, there is actually a medical definition.

Quote:
In order to experience the symptoms of withdrawal, one must have first developed a chemical dependence. This happens after consuming one or more of these substances for a certain period of time, which is both dose dependent and varies based upon the drug consumed...There are different stages of withdrawal as well. Generally, a person will start to feel worse and worse, hit a plateau, and then the symptoms begin to dissipate.
The difference between that and rebound:

Quote:
Many substances can cause rebound effects (significant return of the original symptom in absence of the original cause) when discontinued, regardless of their tendency to cause other withdrawal symptoms. Rebound depression is common among users of any antidepressant who stop the drug abruptly, whose states are sometimes worse than the original before taking medication. This is somewhat similar (though generally less intense and more drawn out) to the 'crash' that users of ecstasy, amphetamines, and other stimulants experience.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Withdrawal

Withdrawal is generally more severe and lasts much longer. It's a result of your body trying to detox itself.
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Old 05-27-09, 02:39 AM
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Re: 1st break from Adderall in 10 months -- Withdrawal: worst is over??

What's written on wikipedia might be a medical definition, but there's conflicting medical definitions on what 'addiction and withdrawal' can mean.

I look at rebound as short term - eg: when the medication is leaving the body and maybe 24 hours after that. Where symptoms of the original condition are stronger than usual. With discontinuation of stimulants you get the sluggishness as well...which might not have been present at all with an ADHD person. Rebound to me is what happens in the evening after your meds stop working.

Quote:
In medical terminology, an addiction is a state in which the body relies on a substance for normal functioning and develops physical dependence, as in drug addiction. When the drug or substance on which someone is dependent is suddenly removed, it will cause withdrawal, a characteristic set of signs and symptoms. Addiction is generally associated with increased drug tolerance. In physiological terms, addiction is not necessarily associated with substance abuse since this form of addiction can result from using medication as prescribed by a doctor.
Dependence doesn't mean you need it either...it's more like your brain has grown accustomed to having the substance there and it will have to adjust when it's taken away.

I'm pretty sure we're talking about the same thing but just calling it different terms. We don't use the term 'rebound' at all in Australia...discontinuation syndrome or withdrawal are the proper medical terms here. They don't have to have anything to do with abuse or druggy type addiction.

Stopping adderall after 10 months of use at a therapeutic dose is hardly going to be noticeable for most. The brain still has to adapt to go back to 'normal' though.

Sigh...long day at work I hope I made some sense. Different proper medical definitions can conflict. Withdrawal doesn't always have to be severe (depending on what part of the world you come from and what the local terminology used is)
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Old 05-27-09, 01:48 PM
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Re: 1st break from Adderall in 10 months -- Withdrawal: worst is over??

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruby85 View Post
Withdrawal only happens to people who are addicted..
thats completely inaccurate, amphetamines cause dependence even at therapeutic dosages, read the full prescribing info
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Old 05-28-09, 01:03 AM
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Re: 1st break from Adderall in 10 months -- Withdrawal: worst is over??

ozchris got it right, its the terminology that is causing confusion here.

Quote:
amphetamines cause dependence even at therapeutic dosages
Addiction is not the same as dependence. Addiction results from an ever-increasing dose when the user keeps chasing a high. We're talking more than therapeutic doses here. Dependence occurs when the user comes to rely on a steady dose to function at a normal level.

People who are dependent (physically or psychologically) might feel like they're addicted, but it's not true addiction, as in "more, more, more!"
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